News: Milk Race returns as a Circuit Race


Legendary cycling event The Milk Race is to make a return to the British sporting calendar after a 20-year absence with a circuit race in Nottingham on May 26.

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The event, which initially ran between 1958 and 1993, will be reborn as a major city centre race – to take place this year in Nottingham on Sunday 26 May 2013. In its previous incarnation, The Milk Race was the most prestigious multi-stage event in the UK and the (now disbanded) Milk Marketing Board’s 35-year sponsorship remains the longest association that the sport of cycling has ever had.


A young Sean Yates in the Milk Race PhotoSport International. uk usa asia.

For 2013, The Milk Race will constitute an elite men’s race and an elite women’s race to happen on the same day alongside a full day’s festival of cycling for all the family in Nottingham. The decision to bring back the event, and to re-ignite the link between the ‘white stuff’ and the sport of cycling, was taken by industry bodies The Dairy Council and the Milk Marketing Forum.

Dairy Council chairman Sandy Wilkie said: “The Milk Race is undoubtedly the most well remembered and most well regarded cycling event that there has ever been in this country. So to bring it back, and to re-establish such a strong link between milk and sport, is a very exciting development.


“Much like British cycling, the ‘white stuff’ has gone through something of a renaissance in recent years through the establishment of the celebrity ‘make mine Milk’ campaign, which has included Olympic champion cyclists Ed Clancy and Laura Trott. It’s therefore a perfect partnership for what promises to be a momentous occasion in Nottingham in May.”

Numerous world and Olympic champions are expected to compete in the elite events, with London 2012 Team Pursuit champion Steven Burke – whose cycling team Node4-Giordana is managed by former Milk Race winner Malcolm Elliott – the first to sign up.


A young Sean Kelly wins a stage in the Milk Race in 1975  PhotoSport International. uk usa asia.


Steven Burke, Olympic Champion at the launch today.

Steven Burke said: “I was only five when the last Milk Race happened so I don’t really remember it but, being trained by Malcolm, I’ve got to know a lot about it and the huge meaning that the name has in the world of cycling. Everyone has such high regard for The Milk Race and I can’t wait to compete this year.”

The elements of The Milk Race involving professional cyclists will be organised by former world champion Tony Doyle, who was also a founder of the Tour of Britain in 1994 and was President of the British Cycling Federation in 1996. Nottingham was chosen as the location for the 2013 event both because of the city’s heritage in cycling – it houses the headquarters of leading brand Raleigh – and for its outstanding commitment to community cycling.

Councillor Jon Collins, Leader of Nottingham City Council, said: “Nottingham has a very strong commitment to cycling and we are proud to be chosen as the first city to host The Milk Race after such a long absence.” While further details about The Milk Race will be unveiled over the next few weeks, a new website – – is now live.


Sean Kelly winning again.  PhotoSport International. uk usa asia.


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